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Mar 24, 2009 10:43 AM

ISO English Peas and Fava Beans

Has anyone seen these yet? Last weekend I asked around and was told to wait for more sun. Wasn't able to make it to the markets over the weekend. Today is the Ferry Plaza market but I don't want to drag myself down there just to come back empty handed...

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  1. i've seen both at bi-rite, and i think beans but not peas at alemany.

    1. Iacopi has English peas at the Ferry Plaza farmers market today (Tuesday - I just returned from there) and had them last Saturday. I didn't see favas anywhere today, but Star Route had them on Saturday (tiny).

      1 Reply
      1. re: farmersdaughter

        Yeah, Star Route has the size you eat the whole bean rather than shelling them.

      2. Thank you to everyone who responded! I did visit the Ferry Plaza Market - in case anyone else is interested, Iacopi does indeed have some beautiful English Peas ($8 for a small paper sack the size of a takeaway sandwich bag). None of the farmer's market vendors have Favas, but Capay Organic/Farm Fresh To You has them ($3.99/lb).


        9 Replies
        1. re: Truffle Dog

          That $8 is for shelled peas or whole in pod?

          Capay's probably bringing in favas from San Diego or thereabouts.

          1. re: Robert Lauriston

            I'm sure it's for whole-in-pod, as that is their regular style of selling them. I have been at the Alemany farmer's market the last two Saturdays looking for English peas, but they are not yet in evidence. I had one dreamy pod full of peas at Contigo two weeks ago as an amuse bouche, and have been searching for them ever since. I found some at Berkeley Bowl, but they were only average in flavor (both the organic and non-organic ones).

            1. re: jillyju

              Yeah, it's their regular style and price, and they're ridiculously expensive, especially considering the yield per bag after shelling. I think Iacopi is the single most over rated vendor at the major farmers markets -- overpriced and not that great quality (their artichokes never seem very fresh to me).

              1. re: Ruth Lafler

                One time a couple of years ago, I sample one and liked it and bought a bag; of course, they are packaged up and you cannot pick out what you prefer. Got it home and found out they were all starchy, picked too mature. I was going to toss them but I had to be back there the following week and I actually returned them and got my $$ back!!

                1. re: Ruth Lafler

                  Iacopi's Swiss Chard is always the biggest bunch and the cheapest price. The stuff is delicious, too. Some big name restaurants buy it. Have to agree about the pricing on the artichokes, though.

            2. re: Truffle Dog

              Don't know the price per pound but Evergreen in the Mission (a south american produce market) between 21st and 22nd on Mission St., always has them when they're in season. best to get them in the a.m., as they sit in the sun all day and tend to get a bit droopy, or they simply get bought up fast. They also had, two weeks ago, fresh green garbanzo beans, which i had only ever seen once, at Canteen. delicious!

              1. re: mariacarmen

                I see fresh garbanzos at the farmers markets every year. Once was enough for me, they average about two beans per pod so it's insanely labor-intensive. Probably be in season by early May.

                1. re: Robert Lauriston

                  That makes me feel better. I'm a sloth in the kitchen, but I don't mind shelling peas ... however that garbanzo exeperiience was something else. I saw them shelled at Berkeley Bowl on Friday and they were $2.19 a pound. So worth the price.

                  The only thing I would warn on shelled, is that the longer the sit, even refrigerated, the more they tend to dry out. So look for green colored beans and if there are some fading to yellow, skip. The BB garbanzos were lovely. They were just above the Mexican fava beans going for 99 cents a lb. Lots of peas of various types as well.

                  1. re: rworange

                    You saw actual shelled, out of the papery-thin pod, sitting there like little green mouse brains, fresh garbanzos at the Bowl?!? That would be a fabulous timesaver. All I've seen there are the still-in-the-pod ones for that same $2.19/lb.

                    And I can state with some authority that it takes almost a half hour of diligent work to shell one pound of them. But once shelled, roasting them for an hour at 400 degrees and tossing with some olive oil, salt and hot paprika towards the end as they start to brown/crisp up. Wow is that good. I'm eating a fistful right now.

                    You can skip the up-front shelling part and just fry them in their pods until the outsides are black, toss in salt and spices, and then peel and munch on them one at a time. Cesar makes a very nice version this way during the season.

            3. The favas at Berkeley Bowl last weekend I believe were labelled from Mexico.

              1. I've seen english peas at Monterey Market the past two weeks. Still waiting for the favas to show up, but isn't it the peak of the season now?

                2 Replies
                1. re: adrienne156

                  I haven't even seen favas at the farmers market yet. Cold winter, late season, I guess.

                  1. re: Robert Lauriston

                    Apparently I was misinformed and the season is actually April-June.